This accessible textbook is unique in that it takes an in-depth look at a small number of key model systems and signaling pathways. The book's chapters logically follow the sequence of human brain development and explain how information obtained from models such as Drosophila and zebrafish addresses topics relevant to this area. Beginning with a brief presentation of methods for studying neural development, the book provides an overview of human development, followed by an introduction to animal models. Subsequent chapters consider the molecular mechanisms of selected earlier and later events, neurogenesis, and formation of synapses. Glial cells and postembryonic maturation of the nervous system round out later chapters. The book concludes by discussing the brain basis of human intellectual disabilities viewed from a developmental perspective.
Focusing on the mechanistic and functional, this textbook will be invaluable to biology majors, neuroscience students, and premedical and pre-health-professions students.
Throughout his distinguished and unconventional career, engineer-turned-molecular-biologist Douglas Axe has been asking the questions that much of the scientific community would rather silence. Now, he presents his conclusions in this brave and pioneering book. Axe argues that the key to understanding our origin is the “design intuition”—the innate belief held by all humans that tasks we would need knowledge to accomplish can only be accomplished by someone who has that knowledge. For the ingenious task of inventing life, this knower can only be God.
Starting with the hallowed halls of academic science, Axe dismantles the widespread belief that Darwin’s theory of evolution is indisputably true, showing instead that a gaping hole has been at its center from the beginning. He then explains in plain English the science that proves our design intuition scientifically valid. Lastly, he uses everyday experience to empower ordinary people to defend their design intuition, giving them the confidence and courage to explain why it has to be true and the vision to imagine what biology will become when people stand up for this truth.
Armed with that confidence, readers will affirm what once seemed obvious to all of us—that living creatures, from single-celled cyanobacteria to orca whales and human beings, are brilliantly conceived, utterly beyond the reach of accident.
Our intuition was right all along.